23 May 2019

Nicky Stevens' family hope DHB will stop inquest challenge

6:05 am on 23 May 2019

The family of a man who took his own life while under the care of the Waikato District Health Board is hoping the board's new commissioner will decide not to have the inquest reopened.

Jane Stevens and Dave Macpherson.

Jane Stevens and Dave Macpherson. Photo: RNZ

The family of 21-year old Nicky Stevens will meet with Karen Poutasi on Thursday afternoon.

Mr Stevens was found in the Waikato River three days after he walked out of Waikato Hospital's mental health unit in 2015.

His mother Jane Stevens said the family was devastated when it heard the DHB was questioning the Coroner's findings.

She is hoping the Commissioner will see sense and let the family finally have some closure.

"We think the sensible and honourable thing to do is withdraw their complaint and call for a new inquest."

She has been shocked and disgusted that it is actually the DHB's insurers which seem to be calling the shots.

"That's not about the politics of kindness or looking after people, that is about their bottom dollar."

"For the DHB it is about not accepting any accountability for their own actions," she said.

Ms Stevens said the meeting with Karen Poutasi is more about watch this space as she has no preconceived idea of the outcome.

"I don't know her but I have heard some good things about her in regard to being a sensible thinking person."

"Let us see what comes out of it and hopefully we will have some good news to share."

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